Picard retires !

Wow, that's weird. something happened here.

#Als' centre Dominic Picard has announced his retirement.
[url=http://www.lapresse.ca/sports/football/201606/03/01-4988120-alouettes-dominic-picard-annonce-sa-retraite.php?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter]http://www.lapresse.ca/sports/football/ ... um=twitter[/url]

Will be interesting to see how this shuffles the deck. Realy comes down to Ruby being able to lock down LT.

Als could go with Blake, Piotrowski or Gagnon at Center.

Crazy timing, but there really weren`t other options available to Popp off-season to replace LBJ.

I`m guessing it will be Matte moved to centre, but it does weaken the overall o-line until LBJ returns.

He certainly never seemed fully engaged if his few comments to the media were any true indicators.

WTF. Well, we're officially in an O-line pickle now. LBJ probably won't be ready until midseason at least and we have no proven options. My guess is that Blake, the oldest of the group with any experience at center, will shift to center, and we'll slot one of White or Piotrowski into the vacant guard spot.

Edit: Could this be a protest resignation because of the stuff happening with Boulay? I mean, why retire five days into training camp?

Nope... Piotrowski is in his third camp. Ryan white is healthy, Gagnon is ready to play guard. Blake played 3 years as RJ3's Center. We are in great shape. I kind of like the idea of rejuvenating the oline while we rebuild the offense.

I don't dispute the quality depth we have, but dude, we are replacing LT and center in the same offseason we're revamping the playbook again and our QBs apart from Glenn have little CFL experience. Yes, I support rebuilding the line, but our playoff chances just went down substantially. That line is going to have growing pains in the first half of the season which will likely cost us wins and might even result in QB injury.

Gagnon is a beast. He's as ready as Mateas and Sung were last year. So if you think about it for a minute. We are bigger, meaner and younger with Blake at Center and Gagnon at Guard than we are with Picard at Center and Blake at Guard.

Where we do take a hit is if Ruby gets hurt. Foucault is practicing with the2nd unit in Carolina so they plan to dress him this year, so we won't see him. Als will have to carry an Import tackle.

Talent and athleticism don't replace CFL experience on the line. Cohesion is as important as the other things and it will take Gagnon, Ruby et al. time to develop cohesion with the rest of the line. Not to mention Blake shifting to a position he hasn't played in years. Long-term, yes, the line will be better, but THIS year they will need time to build chemistry and that will almost certainly affect us in the win column.

I'll be delighted to be proven wrong, though.

We'd have been grafting new components either way. Didier is reporting that Matte will take over at center. That makes no sense to me other than they still aren't sure if they want Blake or Ruby to play LT.

Didier is reporting Jourdain is walking around with a chubby...

Vast difference between rookies and a 10-year CFL veteran who is familiar with the starting QB, the offensive line coach, and the consigliere.

Didier is reporting that Matte will take over at center. That makes no sense to me other than they still aren't sure if they want Blake or Ruby to play LT.
I'm surprised at that. Did Matte play any center in college?
Didier is reporting Jourdain is walking around with a chubby...
OK, I did not need that mental image. :lol:

Dominic Picard probably realized that he does not have it anymore. Il n'a plus le feu sacré.

I don't have problem with his retirement. As HfxTC wrote the o-line is getting younger. I have no problem with Matte at centre. He played centre after Luc Brodeur-Jourdain was injured last season. Philippe Gagnon may not be ready,yet. Jake Piotrowski will most probably replace Kristian Matte at centre. The offensive line will be good.

Richard

Matte filled in for LBJ on occasion the last few years. The individual talent is there, the unanswered question is how long it will take the line to gel.

The only positive is that it helps a bit with the salary cap, unless Picard received a signing bonus.

To be clear, I agree that the talent is there. But a good O-line is as much about cohesion, experience, and chemistry as it is about the individual pieces. Picard did us no favors retiring five days into camp. That's five days where we could have given center reps to someone else. I think the O-line will definitely be stronger in the long term, but in the short term I would be quite surprised if they did not struggle.

Matte played tackle at Concordia.

From Herb Zurkowsky:

Picard, who suffered a concussion and neck injury last season while playing for Winnipeg, said he was retiring because he believes he no longer is capable of playing up to standard – both physically and mentally. Picard, who also plays with braces on both knees, said he was wrestling with the decision over the last few days, reaching a final decision Thursday night.

Left-guard Kristian Matte has played centre before, when injuries required him to change positions. That would likely be Popp’s first move, although he claimed other options exist. Should Matte, a former Concordia Stinger, move to centre, the Als then of course will be forced to find a guard to replace him.

But Popp maintained the Als have enough depth in-house to compensate. The team won’t be forced into making a trade, he said.

[url=http://montrealgazette.com/sports/football/cfl/montreal-alouettes/alouettes-picard-announces-retirement]http://montrealgazette.com/sports/footb ... retirement[/url]

So the fate of the offense will hinge on the less experienced / retooled OL, and the defense will hinge on the less experienced / retooled secondary.

Things can really go either way.. either the new guys gel & step up and we'll be pretty damn good, or they won't and it's gonna be another frustrating season with lots of talent on the field but not the results we would like.
Especially if Glenn goes down early in the season as the OL works things out, it could end up like last year.. throwing QB's out there before they are ready and the season unraveling.

At this time of the year I'm all about hope & positive outlook... so I say it's all gonna work out :slight_smile:

You`re right about the Als areas of concern GMan, but if you go around the league other teams have issues also. For instance Ottawa lost 3 d-linemen and 2 in the secondary. Hamilton starts off without Collaros, no proven kicker and retooling their defense. Toronto counting on a fragile Ray.

So hopefully it all balances out.

Exactement. Je ne vois aucune raison de paniquer. Matte a bien fait à chaque fois qu'il a remplacé Luc. Et comme il a joué comme partant toute la saison passée, je crois qu'il pourrait être encore meilleur cette saison. Sinon, il y a Blake qui peut aussi jouer cette position. Qu'on ait 2 positions à remplacer au lieu d'une ne m'inquiète pas outre mesure. C'aurait été pire si c'était survenu, par exemple, à la 2ième semaine de la saison. À ce moment-ci, il est plus facile d'installer une relève.

C'est une décision qui m'étonne un peu, mais lorsque je repense à l'entrevue qu'il avait accordée il y a quelques semaines, ça ne me surprend plus tellement. Il avait l'air de tout sauf du gars enthousiasmé à l'idée de venir jouer à Montréal. Les mots disaient blanc mais tout le reste disait noir.